I hate when that happens.
In similar situations I've taken several different approaches. I have
access to a wide belt sander, so the number one approach is to go with
a slightly thinner top. Maybe sand it down half way to minimize the
You can also use a burn in stick (you can see them at rockler, etc.),
but you basicially need to try a bunch of them that are close in color
until you get the one that's right. Can be expensive if you don't have
any to start with. Another approach is just using filler. It's easiest
to patch these if they are in a field with lots of action and color
variation ion the grain. Once you fill it you can use lots of diffent
techniques to blend the color in. I often use pencils and permenant
markers. I'll just drw in some new grain lines. It can be a challenge
to get a film over ink or burn in if you use lacquer or poly but
shellac usually flows well. Just test to make sure the colors won't run
in the ink.
If you fill with a clear fill, shellac build up or resin, what you will
have is a visible chip, with a clear filling.
Whatever you do, you will never be able to look at the table top and
not instantly see the problem. However, everybody else in the world
will likely never see it.